It’s the Elton John song it’s OK – no, mandatory – to like. Sniff…
“I believe in days ahead/Don’t spend another night alone, cross and wishing you were dead…” You know what? I’m not going to. But, you know, thanks for caring. And thank you, thank you, thank you Sisters of Scissor, for recording and releasing ‘Mary’, simply the most delightful, lovestruck, unapologetically romantic and heartwarming single of the year. It’s the kind of song that will make even the hardiest singleton want to ask someone out, and as soon as I’ve found Imran Ahmed’s direct line, I fully intend to.
Anyway, this is shamelessly anthemic, for indeed anthems have nothing to be ashamed of, with a beautiful fade-up of drums (you’ll know what I mean when you hear it, and if you’ve even an ounce of wit about you, you’ll still be hearing it when all your teeth, hair and marbles have fallen out) and a warm glow that inches up with every stroke of the piano keys. Yes, it sounds a little like Elton John – in fact, scratch that, it sounds quite remarkably like the bewigged one at times. Yes, the mellifluous middle-eight is pure mid-’70s ‘Fleetwood Mac‘. But in among the metal karaoke and porridge-grey indie rock that makes up so much of the rest of this week’s pile, ‘Mary’’s drivetime pristineness and unabashed populism become almost political acts of anachronism and contra-tidal swimming.
I’m not kidding, there are moments on ‘Mary’ so beautiful (the lyrics “I’ve had it easy now you see/When I’m down you’re always there, standing by to comfort me” for example) that they almost make me proud to be the same species as the one responsible for its creation, and when it ebbs gently to its final conclusion, I defy you to not grin stupidly at everyone else in the room.
And if you’re all alone… well, as long as you have ‘Mary’, you’re not. What? No, I’m not crying. I just… I have something in my eye, OK?